Phase One

Week Two: My opinion of whether knowledge is simply a matter of opinion.

Having reflected on the matter of opinion, I conclude that not all knowledge is a matter of opinion. While I believe that it is a fair human right that we are all entitled to an opinion, the determining factor of one person’s opinion being “good” or “bad” is relative. As such, I will divide opinion into two categories: lived experience opinion, and expert opinion. It should, therefore, go without saying that a person’s opinion based solely on his/her lived experience doesn’t always (if at all) require the need for fact-checking. Such an opinion is relative only to the person the opinion is shared with and the person sharing their opinion.

In contrast, however, an expert opinion is one which is more closely linked with theoretical and practical “knowledge.” An expert opinion is often the type of opinion in which a fee is charged for the exchange thereof. Expert opinions have a little (or perhaps a lot) more credence since such opinions come from persons learned in a particular area of study, so much so that the opinions they share have more substance. Consider, for example, the opinion you might take from a lawyer regarding a legal matter – because we value the lawyer’s opinion on the handling of a legal matter, I will assert that his/her “opinion” comes from tried, tested and proven “knowledge.” Thus, not all knowledge can be said to be only a matter of opinion.

—Darren A. Mc Almont

Hello All,

My name is Darren, and I am a transfer student to the English and Professional Writing programme, here at York. I am currently taking courses in years 1 -3 and have focused my impending degree on writing for the corporate world. My interests include: theatre, playwriting, traveling to and experiencing new places and watching classic movies.

I am truly excited about the course project because it is a deviation from the usual academic and essay writing. Although my experiencing with podcasting is as good as a pig that flies, I welcome the challenge!

Wikipedia has been and still is the first go-to for most undergraduate students. While I would consider this research tactic good for its efficiency in providing a quick answer, it is completely unacceptable for academia. The limit to such a research tactic is that the information consumed via this medium is not always the most credible - and for academic writing, the credibility of your sources is essential.